Simplification

Taking Stock: It's High Time for This Stallion

The Classic season is over. A surface reading shows that Arrogate (Unbridled's Song), Keen Ice (Curlin), and Gun Runner (Candy Ride {Arg}) got the GI Kentucky Oaks, GI Kentucky Derby, and GI Preakness S. winners, respectively, from their first crops, and proven star sire Uncle Mo (Indian Charlie), who had a Derby winner from his first crop in 2016, sired the GI Belmont S. winner. Sometimes, however, what's between the lines is as important as what's on the page, and Taylor Made's Not This Time (Giant's Causeway), whose second-crop sons...

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Early Voting in Good Condition After Preakness Score, Will Skip Belmont

Saturday's GI Preakness S. winner Early Voting (Gun Runner) was back in his stall at Belmont Park by mid-morning Sunday, some 15 hours after scoring a 1 1/4-length victory over favored Epicenter (Not This Time) in Saturday's Middle Jewel of the Triple Crown. Trainer Chad Brown traveled from Baltimore to New York overnight and was at Belmont Sunday to oversee what is typically a busy morning of timed workouts for horses in his stable. During a brief break, Brown said that Early Voting, owned by Seth Klarman's Klaravich Stables, came...

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Preakness Full Circle Moments

BALTIMORE, MD--Every year, a new batch of sophomores converges upon Pimlico Race Course. And while the names of the contenders is ever changing, the people behind them are remain fairly consistent. Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas casts a very long shadow in the second jewel in the Triple Crown, having won it on six prior occasions. From his first Preakness victory with Codex in 1980, Lukas has gone on to add wins with Tank's Prospect (1985), Tabasco Cat (1994), Timber Country (1995), Charismatic (1999) and Oxbow (2013). One...

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Epicenter Draws Eight as 6-5 Preakness Favorite; Secret Oath Gets 4-Hole

GI Kentucky Derby favorite and runner-up Epicenter (Not This Time) drew post eight in a nine-horse renewal of the GI Preakness S. at Monday's pill pull for the second leg of the Triple Crown, while GI Longines Kentucky Oaks victress Secret Oath (Arrogate) got the four post for trainer D. Wayne Lukas as she attempts to become the second filly to win the Preakness in the last three years and give Lukas a seventh Preakness victory. The chestnut was installed as the 9-2 third choice on the morning line behind Epicenter and...

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Rich Strike 'Looking Great' After Derby Shocker

RED TR-Racing's Rich Strike (Keen Ice) left Churchill Downs around 9:30 a.m. ET Sunday to head back to his main base at trainer Eric Reed's Mercury Equine Center in Lexington as a GI Kentucky Derby winner. "I couldn't sleep last night," Reed said after achieving his first Grade I victory and second graded victory in a career that began in 1985. "At four this morning I was wondering if this was real or if it was a dream. I got home and my kids and their friends were there with...

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Derby and Oaks Workers Active on Both Coasts

A trio of GI Kentucky Derby contenders put in their final works ahead of next weekend's Run for the Roses. The only one of the three to work at Churchill Downs was GI Toyota Blue Grass S. winner Zandon (Upstart). Working on his own at 7:30 a.m. over a fast track with regular morning partner Kriss Bon aboard, the Chad Brown pupil completed the five furlongs in 1:00.40 (7/43). Churchill Downs clockers caught Zandon in fractions of :12.80, :25, :36.80, 1:00.40 and out in 1:12.80 and 1:26.40. "I just didn't...

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Uncle Mo Colt Tops OBS April Opener

by Christie DeBernardis & Jessica Martini OCALA, FL--A son of Coolmore's super-sire Uncle Mo (Hip 206) topped the opening session of the Ocala Breeders' Sales Company's Spring Sale Tuesday, summoning $2.3 million from Gary Young, who was acting on behalf of Amr Zedan's Zedan Racing Stables. It was the first $2-million sale since 2017 when a colt by Tiznow brought a record-breaking $2.45 million. Purchased by Scott and Evan Dilworth for $250,000 at KEESEP, Hip 206 was consigned by the Jimbo and Torie Gladwell's Top Line Sales. "April is a...

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The TDN Kentucky Derby Top 20 for April 19

With all the points-earning preps completed, the GI Kentucky Derby picture moves into "microscope mode" as we approach the two-week mark. The rankings below are independent from the "Road to the Derby" leaderboard Churchill Downs uses to determine starting berths. Access that list here. 1) ZANDON (c, Upstart--Memories Prevail, by Creative Cause) O-Jeff Drown. B-Brereton C. Jones (KY). T-Chad C. Brown. Sales History: $170,000 ylg '20 KEESEP. Lifetime Record: GISW, 4-2-1-1, $713,000. Last Start: 1st GI Toyota Blue Grass S., KEE, Apr. 9. Next Start: GI Kentucky Derby, CD, May...

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Simplification Breezes at Gulfstream

Tami Bobo's Simplification (Not This Time) breezed five-furlongs in 1:01.83 Friday morning at Gulfstream Park in preparation for a scheduled start in the May 7 GI Kentucky Derby. It was the GII Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth S. winner's first work since finishing third in the GI Curlin Florida Derby Apr. 2. Junior Alvarado was aboard for the breeze, subbing for jockey Jose Ortiz. "He galloped out six furlongs in 1:15.3, the seven furlongs in 1:27 and the mile in 1:40," trainer Antonio Sano said. "Excellent. I'm so happy with my...

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TDN Kentucky Derby Top 20 For Apr. 12

All the nine-furlong preps for the GI Kentucky Derby are in the books, but Saturday's GIII Lexington S. still offers 20 points to the winner, so there could be some shakeout in the bottom tier of the Top 20. The rankings below are independent from the "Road to the Derby" points leaderboard Churchill Downs uses to determine starting berths. Access that list here.  1) ZANDON (c, Upstart--Memories Prevail, by Creative Cause) O-Jeff Drown. B-Brereton C. Jones (KY). T-Chad C. Brown. Sales History: $170,000 ylg '20 KEESEP. Lifetime Record: GISW, 4-2-1-1,...

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On to Derby for White Abarrio

White Abarrio (Race Day) came out of his victory in Saturday's GI Curlin Florida Derby in fine shape and will now be aimed at the GI Kentucky Derby, trainer Saffie Joseph, Jr. confirmed Sunday. "He was further back than we envisioned and to see him be able to sit back that far off the pace and make his move, it gives you a lot of confidence, because you know he can run close to the pace and now sit back and be as effective," Joseph said of his charge's Florida...

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Florida's Best Face Off in FL Derby

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL--The three winners of Florida's four previous GI Kentucky Derby prep races meet Saturday as they make their final starts ahead of the First Saturday in May in Gulfstream's GI Curlin Florida Derby. Classic Causeway (Giant's Causeway) ruled the Tampa Bay Downs preps, scoring decisive victories in both the GIII Sam F. Davis S. Feb. 12 and the GII Tampa Bay Derby Mar. 12. He hit the board in all three of his juvenile races, starting with a dominant debut at Saratoga Sept. 4. Finishing third after setting...

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